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Forests go far beyond British Columbia; they cover 1/3 of the Earth’s land surface. Forestry graduate students learn from a dynamic and diverse group of researchers who educate and communicate how forests and forest products contribute to the well-being of all living things. The health and sustainability of forests and the people who depend on them underlies everything we do.

The Faculty of Forestry is one of the top institutions globally in forest-related education and research. The unique breadth of expertise we possess allows us to integrate new knowledge across many disciplines. Offering both master’s and doctoral programs, our graduate students learn from a dynamic and diverse group of researchers from around the world.


Research Facilities

The Forest Sciences Centre is a showcase for construction using Canadian forest products, and was architecturally designed to mimic the landscape of British Columbia: towering trees, mountains, and blue-green waters. The 17,505-square-metre Forest Sciences complex has 11 classrooms, 2 lecture theatres, teaching laboratories, office space, computer labs, study areas, and a cafeteria, and houses the Faculty’s three departments.

Built alongside the Forest Sciences Centre is the 3,730-square-metre Centre for Advanced Wood Processing. It is Canada’s national centre of excellence for education and research related to wood products processing and advanced wood products manufacturing, and works to advance knowledge that fosters job creation, stabilizes forest-dependent communities, encourages increased value recovery, and ensures the sustainable management of Canada’s forests. This building includes two 25-seat classrooms, a machine lab, a simulator lab and a computer lab.

Within the Faculty of Forestry, there are also several research groups. Visit the website of each project to find out more.

Off-campus facilities include two Research Forests: the Malcolm Knapp Research Forest in Maple Ridge and the Alex Fraser Research Forest near Williams Lake. These are working forests located throughout the province where students and faculty can study in an outdoor setting. Fish and wildlife, silviculture, forest harvesting, forest ecology, forest management, and resources management figure prominently in these field studies.

Research Highlights

UBC Forestry is turning out a new generation of foresters, and faculty are committed to meeting future challenges in forestry through in-depth, cutting edge research. In fact, UBC Forestry receives the highest level of forestry research funding of any forestry faculty in Canada.

In the 2017/2018 fiscal year, members of the Faculty Forestry were awarded a total of over $12 million in research funding. 

Our wide breadth of research includes topics such as tree rings, integrated remote sensing, bioenergy, forest conservation genetics, landscape visualizations, African forest conservation and development, alpine studies, climate change, and advanced wood processing.

Recent Publications

This is an incomplete sample of recent publications in chronological order by UBC faculty members with a primary appointment in the Faculty of Forestry.


Recent Thesis Submissions

Doctoral Citations

A doctoral citation summarizes the nature of the independent research, provides a high-level overview of the study, states the significance of the work and says who will benefit from the findings in clear, non-specialized language, so that members of a lay audience will understand it.
Year Citation Program
2016 Dr. Furey studied the migration of juvenile sockeye salmon as they swim downstream to open ocean. His research identified specific infections that increase mortality during the migration. He also found that higher density and specific routes impacted migratory success. His work furthers our understanding of salmon migration, management and conservation. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2016 Dr. Bolton used data from satellites and airplanes to study how Canada's forests change through time and vary across space. By developing new techniques to monitor large forested areas, his work will aid in national efforts to quantify the amount of carbon stored in Canada's forests, and how that carbon storage is changing. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2016 Dr. Bett studied the influence of olfaction on the behaviours of Pacific salmon during their spawning migration. He demonstrated that salmon respond differentially to olfactory cues depending on their chemical nature. His results contribute to our understanding of how Pacific salmon navigate towards spawning grounds. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2016 Dr. Burke studied the effects of climate change and range expansion on the biology of the mountain pine beetle. He determined that climate change may enhance the performance of this insect, and the potential for it to continue to spread. His work will help make predictions about which species will be most susceptible to changes in the future. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2016 Dr. Chandran studied the challenges of communicating with local communities while managing forests. His research examined the relationship between management practices and local cultures, resulting in the creation of a model for Communications and Governance. This model has helped to design inclusive communication strategies for multiple stakeholders. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2016 Dr. Lim examined the suitability of an engineered wood product as structural members of shear walls. Shear walls are designed to accommodate the lateral load of buildings. These in-depth studies assist us in understanding which and how material properties affect the performance of connection and shear wall systems. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2016 Dr. Cao investigated novel approaches for using and examining the effectiveness of LiDAR technologies in order to classify tree species and estimate forest biomass and dynamics in a subtropical forest. These approaches provide methodologies for sustainable forest management, forest carbon cycling studies and carbon accounting projects. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2016 Dr. Tomscha mapped how ecosystem services (the benefits people receive from ecosystems) have changed over time in a floodplain ecosystem using a novel air photo-based approach. She found that frontier settlement disproportionately occurred in riparian and floodplain ecosystems. She also demonstrated that historical information is key to better understanding how ecosystem services interact. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2016 Dr. Huber explored the floral and reproductive biology of highbush blueberry, an important fruit in British Columbia. She identified variation in floral characteristics and fertility that has implications for pollination and fruit yield improvements. The findings from her research could benefit blueberry growers and breeders. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)
2016 Dr. Singh examined the relationship between tribal communities and forests in India. Her research establishes the criminalization of tribal way-of-life on account of inconsistent forest laws. The research offers insights into participatory forest management to protect tribal rights and forests, advocating a serious overhaul of forest laws. Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD)